Open mic friends Kai & Guillermo had been telling me about the enjoyment they’ve been experiencing at the family-friendly Fig Tree Coffee, Art, and Music Lounge on Vernon St. in Roseville, which hosts an open mic on Saturday evenings. Nov. 4 turned out to be a perfect night to go and see for myself.
The host, James, acknowledges everyone who comes in and signs up, making them feel welcome and a special part of the night’s program. The Fig Tree staff do the same, and the overall feeling upon entering is like being invited over to sit in the cozy den of a friend’s home to enjoy a music recital while you sip a steaming mug of coffee or tea. Most of the acts were musical, but unexpectedly, a very talented magician performed and amazed the audience. In fact, I was among several people called up to assist him with a what I recognized as a very sophisticated trick, and he pulled if off brilliantly.
The Fig Tree attracts people who enjoy listening to music in an informal and indoor setting, and at least on the night I dropped in, it seemed as though more people came to simply enjoy a pleasant evening at the Fig Tree rather than to sign up to play.
If you plan to visit the Fig Tree you’ll need to know the lowdown on parking. The block of Vernon St. on which the Fig Tree sits is very popular on weekend evenings, and nearby parking is difficult to find unless you get there real early. But here’s the secret: pull your car up near the front door and double-park briefly if you need to unload anything heavy or bulky, then pull out and continue two blocks to a free multi-story parking garage on Vernon St., on the left.
For those of you living outside Roseville but thinking about expanding your performing area, meeting some new musicians, and maybe making a few new friends, I’d strongly recommend taking the time to participate in a Fig Tree open mic night.